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  • Автор: Mariya
  • Дата: 27-09-2012
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27-09-2012

Analyze of media situation in Ukraine for September 20-26, 2012

Категорія: English » Media Updates

U-Media Weekly Briefer

September 20 - 26, 2012

HOT MEDIA SECTOR NEWS

Freedom of Speech

The Law on Criminalization of Defamation received negative feedback from Ukrainian and international expert community

Ukrainian and International media NGOs, public officials and media experts voiced their concerns about adoption in the first reading of the Draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation: the draft law contains threats for freedom of speech and may cause self-censorship among journalists. Public activists requested the Speaker of the Parliament and the President to abolish the draft Law. As a result, Presidential Administration and Speaker of the Parliament promised to make amendments the draft Law before the second reading, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75230.

  • September 20 – Speaker of the Parliament Volodymyr Lytvyn promised that the draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation will not be adopted in the second reading. At the meeting with the Election Observation Mission of the PACE Temporarily Committee on Elections Observation in Ukraine, Mr. Lytvyn stated that the draft Law cannot be adopted in contemporary Ukraine since there is no distinction of  defamation and critics in most of cases, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75236.
  • September 20 – Polish Member of the European Parliament Mr. Pavel Koval, in his interview to UNIAN, expressed a confidence that the adopted in the first reading draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation contained threats for freedom of speech in Ukraine. Ukraine used to have the highest level of media freedom among the post-soviet countries. The draft Law worsens the country’s image on the eve of 2012 Parliamentary Elections, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75238.
  • September 20 – National Council on TV and Radio reported about a common decision of its members not to support the draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation. Interagency Working Group on Freedom of Speech and Journalists’ Rights Protection at the Presidential Administration scheduled an extra meeting on September 19. The Council’s press-release stated that a law of this type cannot exist in the countries with developed democracy. Adoption of the draft Law would damage Ukraine’s achievements towards freedom of speech and would prevent development of independent media in Ukraine, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75245.
  • September 21Stop Censorship! movement distributed a public statement on protests against the Draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation. According to the statement, such a step taken by MPs is a potential restriction of certain rights and freedoms of every Ukrainian, because it causes criminal responsibility in an arbitrary manner for words spoken against public figures and criticism of public policy, http://www.telekritika.ua/pereklad_cenzura/2012-09-21/75288.
  • September 21 - Chair of the Humanitarian Council for Social and Political Issues at the  Presidential Administration Ms. Hanna Herman expressed her confidence that President Victor Yanukovych would not sign the Law on Criminalization of Defamation. She assumed that the draft Law will be significantly changed and become more loyal toward journalists before the second reading at the Parliament. However, Ms. Herman mentioned that professional standards of Ukrainian journalism are not high and require regulations, http://www.telekritika.ua/daidzhest/2012-09-21/75286.
  • September 25 – A nation-wide action “Say “No” to a draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation” started simultaneously in several regions of Ukraine. National and regional media – “Ukrainska Pravda”, “Correspondent”, “Komsomolskaya Pravda v Ukraine”, Focus.ua, Delo.ua, TVi, LB.ua, Football.ua, iSport.ua, Liga Business Inform, Telekritika, Newsru.ua, Invest Gazeta, KyivPost, “Den” (Day), RBK-Ukraine, “Ostrov” (Island), “Ukrainski Novyny” (Ukrainian News) and Interfax agencies invited readers to a Facebook group named “Say No to a draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation. It concerns all of us”, https://www.facebook.com/groups/naklep/. Since September 20, the group gathered 5,704 FB users. http://korrespondent.net/video/ukraine/1399349-startovala-akciya-zashchiti-svoe-pravo-znat-skazhi-net-zakonu-o-klevete.
  • September 26 – This week issue of a popular Ukrainian magazine “Correspondent” was published with a white cover and words protesting against the draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation. This action of protest was supported by “Ukrainska Pravda”, “Komsomolskaya Pravda v Ukraine”, Focus.ua, “Segodnya” (Today), TVi, LB.ua, Football.ua, iSport.ua, Liga.net, Telekritika, Newsru.ua, Delo.ua, “InvestGazeta” (Invest Newspaper), KyivPost, “Den” (Day), RBK-Ukraine, “Ostrov” (Island), “Ukrainski Novyny” (Ukrainian News) and Interfax agencies. They placed banners on their web-sites’ main pages requiring to cancel adoption in the first reading of the Law on Criminalization of Defamation, http://korrespondent.net/ukraine/politics/1399429-zavtra-ryad-ukrainskih-gazet-vyjdut-s-pustymi-pervymi-polosami
  • September 26 – Mr. Vitaliy Zhuravskiy, MP from Party of Regions, the author of a scandal draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation, recalled his draft Law and required cancelation of the results of consideration of the draft Law in the first reading. He explained his decision by interests of the state and demonstrated his understanding that any legislative initiative is accepted with concerns and distrust before elections. However, Mr. Zhuravskiy stated about his plans to pursue with the issue of responsibility for abasement of human dignity and lie. He plans to conduct round tables and expert discussions after the voting day to promote the draft Law in a way acceptable for media, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-25/75386.

TVi paid its tax debts with assistance of citizens and a United Opposition

  • September 21 – United Opposition provided TVi with about UAH2 mln to pay its tax debts incriminated by the court. According to the Head of the United Opposition Mr. Arseniy Yatesniuk, the election fund of the opposition was reduced by UAH2 mln to help the independent national channel avoid its shut down. Another UAH 2mln was fundraised by TVi from Ukrainian citizens, www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-21/75259.
  • September 24 – TVi channel transferred UAH 4,098 thousand to Tax Administration and continues collecting money from citizens. About 11 thousands of Ukrainians provided TVi with about UAH 2,845 thousand. TVi kept about UAH747 thousand for its development because the channel experienced a huge loss because of switching off from Triolan cable operator, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-24/75356.

Threats for and Beating Journalists

  • September 20 – Kyiv police finally started a criminal prosecution of a photographer of Internet media Tochka.net Mr. Vitaliy Lazebnyk who was beaten by an unknown person on May 4, 2012. Despite statements of witnesses that the attacker very much looks like the Director of the Park “Peremoga” (proved by the photo and video) police continues identification and search of the guilty person since May. The Prosecutor refused investigating Mr. Lazebnyk’s case as prevention from professional journalist work, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75240.
  • September 20 – A journalist of a local web-media 0629 in Mariupol, Donetsk region, Mr. Mykola Riabchenko was beaten while shooting a traffic accident. Four men involved into the accident demanded from journalist to stop shooting. When Mr. Riabchenko said that he is a journalist executing the newsroom’s task, four men beat him and broke his camera. Police started investigation of the accident. However, the journalist does not believe that police will find guilty people: he experienced a similar incident in the past and the investigation finished with no results because a guilty person was a son of  a member of a Court of Appeals, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75247.
  • September 21 – A news journalist of STB channel Ms. Iryna Fedoriv received a phone threat: an unknown person said she interfered in the serious peoples’ business. Anonymous recommended her to spend more time with her family members because everything might happen to them. After analyzing burning topics she has covered lately, the journalist concluded that the caller meant public actions against illegal constructions in Kyiv recreation zone – Belychanskiy forest, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-21/75274. Police investigated Ms. Fedoriv’s complaint and informed that already found a person who called her. The name of person is not mentioned due to prosecution actions, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-26/75387. STB channel provided Ms. Iryna Fedoriv and her family with protection for the period of investigation, http://video.telekritika.ua/show/no_comment/1177-irina_fedoriv_buti_gromadianinom_telekanalu_stb_priemno_25.09.2012.

Media Legislation

September 20 – The Court of Appeals proved that the decision of Kyiv City Court on illegal Warning Note to TVi made by the National Council on TV and Radio in September 2011 was correct. The Note concerned improper programming in Crimea in November 2010. However, TVi disputed the Council methodology on classifying the broadcast content and terms when the Note might be issued. The National Council did not comment the Appeal Court decision for a while, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-20/75234, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2011-10-14/66451.

U-MEDIA AND ITS PARTNERS’ ACTIVITIES:

  • September 26 – U-Media DCOP Ms. Oksana Maydan made a presentation of crowdsourcing and media monitoring projects at the election Donor Meeting organized by the EU delegation. U-Media introduced latest results of jeansa placement and assessment of professional journalist standards in national and regional media – TV, print and Internet. Crowdsourcing website ELECTUA.ORG was officially launched on September 19 at the press-conference at UNIAN.
  • September 26 – “Suspilnist” (Society) Foundation held a debate with Mr. Serhiy Tigipko (Party of Regions). Mr. Tigipko introduced a program of Party of Regions for the upcoming 2012 Parliamentary Elections 2012 and answered questions of students from different regions of Ukraine. Online broadcasting was provided by partner Internet TV Company BeTV, http://betv.com.ua/online/campus_3-0_tygipko/. 
  • September 25 – Internews Ukraine (IUA) held a presentation of its crowdsourcing project ELECTUA.ORG in Lviv to attract more attention to trustworthy source of information of violations during the election campaign. Reports about violations are divided into two layers –1) all incoming public reports, and 2) verified reports.
  • September 22, Kerch (Crimea) – TRK “Briz” opened a new section "Ask the candidate" on its Kerch.fm website. Website readers received the opportunity to ask questions to candidates running for the seats at the Crimean Parliament. Candidates’ answers will be published in “Briz-Courier” newspaper and aired on “Briz” radio,  

http://kerch.fm/2012/09/22/novaya-rubrika-sayta-zadayte-vopros-kandidatu.html

  • September 21 – Internews Vice-President Mr. Josh Machleder met with U-Media Advisory Board members to discuss current media situation in Ukraine, as well as results of media monitoring and specifics of crowdsourcing project.
  • September 21 – Center for Ukrainian Reform Education (CURE) published its August report on quality of regional print and Internet media. Monitoring results demonstrated growth of Internet jeansa – every fifth news report was politically biased. Most of internet jeansa was found  in Lviv media. Sumy, Crimea and Vinnytsia lead in placement of print jeansa in August 2012, http://osvita.mediasapiens.ua/material/10448.  
  • September 21, Kyiv – Democratic Initiatives Foundation (DIF) conducted a press- conference to introduce its survey results on Ukrainian citizens’ attitude towards freedom of speech and level of trust to media. According to DIF, most of Ukrainians receive information about political parties and candidates from TV programs and PSAs. Influence of Internet and Social Networks on voters’ preferences is minimal, http://www.telekritika.ua/notices/2012-09-18/75168.

Ms. Iryna Bekeshkina, DIF director, reported about forged ratings of candidates that were widely distributed through national TV channels and web-sites. E.g., a research of a little- known Institute of Regional Development Studies stated there are two leaders of the election campaign – Party of Regions and UDAR (Vitaliy Klichko). However, the research company’s website has latest publications dated in 2009, http://vybory.mediasapiens.ua/2012/09/20/inter-ta-pershyj-natsionalnyj-pidlovyly-na-poshyrenni-sumnivnyh-rejtynhiv-partij/.  

  • September 20 - Telekritika published results of TV news content analysis made by the Academy of Ukrainian Press (AUP): national TV channels do not attract citizens’ attention to elections and politics. Only 13% of news are balanced. Sports, culture, road accidents and criminal news are the dominant topics of the prime-time reporting. More information in English is available at http://www.aup.com.ua/?cat=analytics&subcat=news&menu=septnews1, http://osvita.mediasapiens.ua/material/10413.
  • September 20, Simferopol (Crimea) – NGO “Crimean Media Group” conducted training on writing headlines. Trainer – Lenur Yunusov, Crimean U-Media advisor. 8 journalists, editors, reporters and radio hosts from Crimeantatars.org website and Meydan-FM radio participated in the event. Participants learned the theory of writing headlines and did exercises.
  • September 20-21 and 22-23, Kyiv – Regional Press Development Institute (RPDI) held two seminars on legal issues “Protection of journalists’ professional rights. Media activities during the Election Campaign 2012” for regional journalists. Participants learned about legal fundamentals of agitation and PSAs, reporting on private life of public officials, photo and video shooting, protection of information and sources, as well as restrictions for journalists’ work during the elections. , iSpo�wa �r � Telekritika, Newsru.ua, Delo.ua, “InvestGazeta” (Invest Newspaper), KyivPost, “Den” (Day), RBK-Ukraine, “Ostrov” (Island), “Ukrainski Novyny” (Ukrainian News) and Interfax agencies. They placed banners on their web-sites’ main pages requiring to cancel adoption in the first reading of the Law on Criminalization of Defamation, http://korrespondent.net/ukraine/politics/1399429-zavtra-ryad-ukrainskih-gazet-vyjdut-s-pustymi-pervymi-polosami
  • September 26 – Mr. Vitaliy Zhuravskiy, MP from Party of Regions, the author of a scandal draft Law on Criminalization of Defamation, recalled his draft Law and required cancelation of the results of consideration of the draft Law in the first reading. He explained his decision by interests of the state and demonstrated his understanding that any legislative initiative is accepted with concerns and distrust before elections. However, Mr. Zhuravskiy stated about his plans to pursue with the issue of responsibility for abasement of human dignity and lie. He plans to conduct round tables and expert discussions after the voting day to promote the draft Law in a way acceptable for media, http://www.telekritika.ua/news/2012-09-25/75386.

UPCOMING EVENTS

  • September 27, Uzhhorod – National Independent Media Trade Union (NIMTU) will hold a seminar on legal issues for journalists. Key topics: Law on Elections and journalists rights. Media lawyers will introduce effective ways to protect journalists’ rights and get access to information during the election campaign. NIMTU’ legal hotline continues providing telephone and online consultancy for journalists from different regions of Ukraine.
  • September 28-29 – Regional Press Development Institute (RPDI) will hold an investigative reporting training “Follow the money: reporting on coverage of funding sources of political parties and candidates during elections” for journalists from western and central regions of Ukraine. Participants will gain knowledge on approach to monitoring of political parties’ funds, state procurement actions and corruption on the  national and regional levels. 16 participants are expected, http://www.telekritika.ua/notices/2012-08-22/74341.
  • September 29 – First International Forum “Media for Informational Society” will take place in Kyiv under support of the Council of Europe, Embassy of France, Internews, US Embassy in Belarus and other local and international partners. Sections will cover management of Internet and multi-stake holders, digital economy and censorship in Internet, http://www.telekritika.ua/notices/2012-09-26/75392.
  • October 12 – Parliamentary Committee on TV and Radio under support of the Council of Europe will hold a roundtable “Universe Program Service in Europe and Possible Solutions for Ukraine” to discuss the best approach to form social pack of available digital broadcasters for Ukraine, http://www.telekritika.ua/notices/2012-09-25/75370.